Spirit of '76 Chapter - New Orleans, Louisiana

Flag of 1776


Our members are actively engaged in helping create a library in a local public school, sending needed supplies to Landstahl Medical Center in Germany, raising funds, with the additional assistance of a grant from the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, so that a print of the American Flag, based on an original work of art, may be placed in each patient's room of the new veterans hospital to be built in New Orleans. Our chapter programs focus on both local and national historical events.


The Spirit of '76 Chapter National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution is the oldest and largest chapter in Louisiana.

The initial meeting of the founding members of the chapter was held at the old Howard Library at Lee Circle in New Orleans on April 1, 1895, and it was officially organized on May 2, 1895, and granted its charter on June 11 of that same year. The Spirit of '76 chapter formed just five years after the National Society was granted its charter by Congress.

Live Oak Tree
Live Oak Tree in Audubon Park


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Louisiana's Role


Although Louisiana was not part of the original 13 colonies, it played a major role in the success of the American Revolution and provided a large number of patriots for the cause. Louisiana was under the rule of Spain in 1776. Spain did not join forces with the United States until 1779. Don Bernardo de Galvez, Governor of Louisiana, is responsible for several victories including the battles of Baton Rouge, Fort Butte, and Natchez.

Don Bernardo de Galvez, son of the Governor of Mexico, became Governor of the Spanish territory of Louisiana in 1777. At that time, Louisiana's population was between 14,000 and 16,000, not enough for Galvez to build a strong economy, so when Galvez first took office his main focus was populating Louisiana. Very quickly, Galvez's attention was diverted to the growing conflict between Britain and her colonies. Although France openly recognized American independence, Spain hesitated recognizing the fledgling country until May 8, 1779, when Spain declared war on England as an ally of France. Spain then told Galvez that he could wage war on the British in America.

Galvez took action and mustered an army of about 700 soldiers and began marching from New Orleans north, picking up more soldiers along the way, with the final force reaching a total number of about 1,300. Galvez attacked the British forts along the Mississippi River.

On September 6, 1779, Galvez and his army captured Fort Butte near Bayou Manchac and then marched his army on to Baton Rouge where he was met with a well-fortified fort that would not be easily taken. Using a diversionary tactic, Galvez had his soldiers dig trenches close to the fort's walls and then faked an attack from another direction. The tactic worked, and on September 21, 1779, the British surrendered the fort at Baton Rouge to Galvez. As part of his terms of surrender, Galvez insisted the British also surrender Fort Panmure at Natchez, giving Spain control of both sides of the Mississippi River. Because of Galvez's victories, Captain William Pickles was able to bring an American schooner named the "Morris" onto Lake Pontchartrain where he boarded and seized the British privateer, "West Florida," which had dominated Lake Pontchartrain for two years.

Chapter Regent


Patti Millan - Regent

Cynthia Glancy - Vice Regent

Lee Frances Pitre - 2nd Vice Regent

Carter Stevens Molony - 3rd Vice Regent

Alice Dantro - Chaplain

Alicia Ohlmeyer - Recording Secretary

Laurel Reid - Corresponding Secretary

Marilyn Levin - Treasurer

Carlie Winstanley - Registrar

Judith Ahrens - Historian

Lisa Landesman - Librarian

Jesse Scalia - Curator

Aline W. Davis - Parliamentarian









Members enjoying lunch after the meeting!

Gifts going to Landstuhl!